As we already know, The Osiris Satellite [ OSIRIS-REx ] was launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida yesterday. Atlas V 411 successfully sent OSIRIS-REx into orbit with a target in mind – Asteroid Bennu.
Hooray NASA !
We also know Bennu is B-type asteroid with a ~500 meter diameter. It completes an orbit around the Sun every 436.604 days (1.2 years) and every 6 years comes very close to Earth, within 0.002 AU.*
According to NASA, Bennu is referred to as one of closest asteroids to Earth which is called Near-Earth Objects (NEOs).
What’s really interesting, Bennu has a high probability of impacting Earth in approximately the year 2173. It’s not clear if NASA scientists will prevent a collision from happening, but they will have the opportunity to learn more about the asteroid, when OSIRIS-REx returns in 7 years.
150 years is a long time to worry about just one asteroid, but it’s hazardous orbit towards Earth is concerning, nevertheless.
Maybe by then, NASA scientists will come up with a solution to avoid certain disaster on Earth. As quote by NASA, “Bennu’s size, primitive composition, and potentially hazardous orbit make it one of the most fascinating and accessible NEOs … and the ideal OSIRIS-REx target asteroid.”
We’ll see what happens in the late 22nd century.
By then, I’m figuring we should have a small colony on Mars, which might mean the difference between life or death, for all of mankind. Mars may so happen to become the savour of the whole human race.
It’s imperative we get the human race into space soon !
Time to start thinking of other planets to colonize before it’s too late, like our ancestors.
Stephen Hawking warned: Flee Earth before it’s too late in his speech earlier this year saying,” I believe that the long-term future of the human race must be in space. … It will be difficult enough to avoid disaster on planet earth in the next hundred years, let alone in the next thousand or million,” Hawking told digital forum the Big Think. “The human race shouldn’t have all its eggs in one basket, or on one planet. Let’s hope we can avoid dropping the basket until we have spread the load.”
It’s remarkable to understand NASA has spent billions to understand more about this asteroid and possible information on the origin of life. To read between the lines, it’s clear scientists are very concerned.
As stated in the Asteroid Mission OSIRIS-REx’s key science main objectives include:
- Return and analyze a sample of Bennu’s surface
- Map the asteroid (cool to see Canadian scientists were involved with this technology)
- Document the sample site
- Measure the orbit deviation caused by non-gravitational forces (the Yarkovsky effect)
- Compare observations at the asteroid to ground-based observations.
In 2018, OSIRIS-REx will approach Bennu and take the necessary samples and return return back to Earth on September 2023, giving us 150 years to decided what we’ll do in the year 2173.
This asteroid is just one of many, assigned with a close trajectory towards Earth, or referred to as Near-Earth Objects (NEOs). In fact, NASA is calling on all amateur astronomers to help in the search of impending asteroids.
It’s called ***Target Asteroids!
I realize our generation or the next five generations will most likely NOT be around to see the outcome, but it’s a stern reminder to get off our butts and put everything we have into the Space Program, before we become a statistic, like the dinosaurs.
Bennu Asteriod – Will it impact Earth? Well, we have 150 years to find out 😱
By Bari Demers
P.S. Read more about the trajectory of Bennu and how one of the most primitive asteroid (enriched with carbon) will give us a look into the past of our solar system.
DON’T FORGET : As it’s an amazing accomplishment by NASA scientists, we must not forget …” Bennu is also one of the most potentially hazardous asteroids, as it has a relatively high probability of impacting the Earth late in the 22nd century.”
*** TARGET ASTERIODS